This blog is about planning and preparation for a circumnavigation of the world in a 39-foot sail boat followed, hopefully, by a diary of the actual circumnavigation. You can track the progress of Pachuca by visiting http://www.pangolin.co.nz/xtras/yotreps/tracker.php?ident=VNW5980
Monday, November 30, 2009
The day after Thanksgiving Arnold set of in his RX7 for a visit to good friends Mike and Tina in Sacramento. He had good weather, and broke the journey with an overnight stay in a motel near the Oregon border.
Yesterday the three of them showed up at the Marina. We took a leisurely stroll along the bayside walk in the brilliant sunshine for lunch at the nearby Boiler Room restaurant, set inside an ex Ford factory assembly plant.
After a long visit to the boat over beers and white wine we left at dusk for the Salute e Vita Ristorante on the other side of the marina. We were graced with our own private nook with a large warm "wood" fire (gas, actually, but it fooled me) and the food was superb. (I had the Fettuccine Pescadore which was nothing less than a seafood smorgasbord on one plate. Yum!) I think that we were all reluctant to leave the cozy and warm atmosphere because we lingered over coffee and desert and discussions on solving the world's problems.
I let the this blog down by forgetting to take my camera on the lunch outing. However, I did take this photo of Mike and Tina in Pachuca's cabin.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
From now on an attempt to send a comment will be accompanied by request that you manually key in a word that is displayed in front of you. This will frustrate those mindless robots that scour the internet trying to make everyone's life miserable.
Users of Facebook and other internet facilities will be familiar with the technique. When you try it you'll see how easy it is. If you want to know more see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
I apologize for this extra layer of procedure but it is for our collective protection.
After the visit to MOMA we returned to Market Street and boarded the No. 6 bus to visit the Haight Ashbury district. I had been expecting to find a forgotten backwater of interest only to the occasional fossil from the '60s era. Instead we found a prosperous community of charming 19th century SF homes, plenty of young people, lots of hustle and bustle, and still a strong magnet for tourists a full 40 years after the Hippie era. The first shop that we noticed was a "smoke" shop with all sorts of bongs, hubble bubbles, and other smoking paraphanalia. I wondered why only one of the four street corners had the magic names "Haight" and "Ashbury" on it, and why the signs were so high up instead of just above head height as an easier backdrop for tourist photos. We were told that we tourists kept ripping off the street signs that were too low and convenient to reach.
The top photo is of a Hippie Wannabe with gray hair instead of black, two sets of glasses instead of beads around his neck, and a loaf of bread instead of a joint in his hand. Flower Power has given way to Flour Power. Vae Victis.
The second photos shows Brenda, who remembers the '60s, which proves that she really wasn't there.
The third photo shows some of the tourist interest that the area still holds. The other photos give a hint of the superb physical environment.
The mural in the penultimate photo is of Jimi Hendrix.
Yesterday we visited the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). After waiting in a queue for 20 minutes we were told at the ticket counter that the museum's entire permanent collection of paintings and sculptures on the second floor was closed for renovations. This was profoundly disappointing to Brenda and myself. For me it had presented perhaps my only chance to see original Matisse's, Picasso's, Warhol's and many other masterpieces. Brenda has at least seen many original masterpieces in museums in Europe.
We made the best of it and attentively viewed the contemporary art on display. For me, who claims the aesthetic sensibility of a clam, most of the art varied from mildly interesting to uninteresting (principally the photographs) to disdain (particularly a canvas of all gray where the frame was sort of half painted in gray as though the painter was in a hurry.) I see no skill or inspiration in geometric paintings or those with patterns of flat colors. There was one work that attracted me very much and Brenda was able to take a good photograph of it. It had been done by a Vietnamese artist and conveyed to me a strong message about war and its affect on people. We also saw a very interesting art form involving multiple screens. One work titled "Motherhood" had clips from female actors such as Susan Sarandon, Meryl Streep, and Shirley McClain cleverly edited to present a powerful message about motherhood. The building itself was an art work.
We then visited the Yerba Buena Gardens across the road which we found to be interesting, beautiful, and serene. On one side was the Martin Luther King fountain. On the other side was St Patrick's Church. That entire area was like a large pedestrian oasis in the middle of San Francisco and is a credit to the city.
The top photograph was taken by Brenda of the work that affected me the most. If you look hard you will see the juxtaposition of a soldier, war planes, and people, set in the colors of napalm and Agent Orange. The second one shows the glass skylight of the building, which can be seen in external photos of the building. Further down are photos taken by Brenda at the Martin Luther King waterfall. Her visit to MOMA inspired her artistic photograph of the old lady sitting next to the screen. Thus inspired she then took the one the leaves floating in the water. The dark gray cubes in the last photo is the site of the Contemporary Jewish Museum.
Brenda and I were fortunate and privileged to have Thanksgiving dinner in the warm atmosphere of a private family home.
Brenda had I had met Jak Mang and his friends John and wife Priscilla in Port Townsend last September. Brenda and I had inspected John's newly-acquired S&S 43 "Rebecca" which was in a nearby jetty and I commented on how much I would like to meet the owner to discuss our boats. Soon after, Jak and John from Rebecca visited Pachuca because they had been attracted by her familiar S&S stern.
Jak and his wife Corine live here in San Francisco. John and Priscilla live in San Diego.
Jak invited Brenda and me to Thanksgiving dinner at the home of Francis and Martha, good friends of theirs. Corine picked us up and Brenda and I were amazed at how nice the residential areas of Oakland were. The elegant houses on the rolling hills reminded me a bit of Aukland. We soon arrived at the home of Francis, his wife Martha, and their two young girls Leah and baby Ona.
Young man Rob, Francis's son, completed the group.
Jak and Francis prepared the turkey feast and Martha & Corine provided the desert. I can't eat like I used to and I wish that I could have eaten three heaped plates of the wonderful dinner instead of the more civilized one. But I enjoyed what I ate (over red wine, of course) and so did Brenda. For me the pumpkin pie was the perfect finish to the meal.
For Brenda this was her first genuine USA Thanksgiving dinner. We both enjoyed very much the company and conversation with these fine peole and departed with fond and enduring memories of Thanksgiving 2009.
The top photo shows Jak (left) and Francis having fun carving the turkey. The next photo caught Corine (left) at an awkward moment, but this was the only photo of the dinner table that I had. (Sorry Corine.) Behind Corine is daughter Leah, then Francis at the head of the table, with Martha and Jak at the right. Behind Martha you can see glimpses of baby daughter Ona. Rob was to my left, out of view.
The bottom photo is, left to right: Brenda, Jak, Corine, Martha, Rob, and Francis.
On Wednesday morning I "finished"a job that had proven to be more difficult than I had expected. I had a proud bolt on the starboard car track that prevented the car from moving forward more than a third of the track. When I tried to tighten it the bolt would simply go round and round, so I figured that the nut underneath was spinning. I calculated that the nut must be very close to the bulkhead separating the galley from the settee. I went to the trouble of dropping the ceiling panel over the galley and saw no bolt. I then did some awkward drilling and chiseling inside the storage area on the other side of the bulkead and found a bolt which a simple test confirmed was the next one forward of the problem one. I then did some drilling directly into the corner of the bulkhead until I was forced to stop when I struck solid fiberglass of the frame. I went to bed very frustrated. In the wee hours I figured out that if I could not get to that area neither could the person who had laid the track. I figured that whoever had done that job must have not factored in the location of the bulkhead underneath and maybe, just maybe, covered up his blunder by simply sticking in a bolt with no nut. And so it was. The bolt unscrewed easily bringing up some of the sealant that had been used. There was little to be gain from wallowing in the intense irritation that these sloppy work cover ups generate in my head and concluded that a true fix must await my return to Fremantle; so I filled up the hole with Sikaflex and shoved the bolt in. I left some of the white Sikaflex showing so that I would avoid placing the car over that position. The accompanying photo shows the bogus bolt ringed in white at the top left, and the galley vent that has tormented me with leaks on the right.
In the late afternoon I left the boat for a shower. As I approached the locked jetty gate I saw a man on the other side with an open cell phone in his hand. I figured that he required entry to visit a friend so I held the door wide open to let him through. I had been more correct than I could imagine: the friend he was going to visit was me, and Brenda. It was Simeon from the Port Townsend area. Brenda and I had met Simeon on the bridge of a historic tug boat on display at the Wooden Boat Show and we had subsequently engaged in some correspondence regarding his quest to find his family boat that last he heard was in Tasmania. (He was successful.)
Simeon introduced himself and what a delightful surprise it was. He and his wife were in the SF area for Thanksgiving. From the blog Simeon was familiar with Pachuca and her crew. He recognized the boat from a distance, knew the cause of the rust line on the bow plate, and knew what the bicycle on the deck was all about. After a short chat among the three of us in the cabin I asked him if he wanted me to show him the boat and he said he didn't need to because he knew all about it from the blog. He mentioned something that I had published on the log and it had been so long ago that I could not remember it. Simeon had read every blog entry from the very first one when I was still preparing the boat for the circumnavigation.
Jim happened to drop by later and he and Simeon had a chat about boats and kayaks in particular. The accompanying photos were taken by Brenda (the top one) and Simeon (the rest). In the top two photos Jim is on the left and Simeon is in the middle. In the background is a gorgeous Honolulu-like twilight with San Francisco in the background.
The bottom photo is a clever one of Pachuca's mast against a half moon. I hope that it shows up well in this blog.
On Tuesday Noel and Jackie set off on a cruise to Australia on their newly-acquired 51-foot boat "Pyewacket".
Noel and Jacky are experienced cruisers who hail from NSW, south of Sydney. They had purchased the boat in Sausalito only two or three weeks earlier, so they had been working very hard prepare themselves and the boat for the trip. I cast off their last line then took the accompanying photos.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Hi Stephen here,
Bob and I have made a little change to the commenting system. It's as it used to be, but now it has an easy word verification. You just type in the word that matches the picture, too easy.....!
Unfortunately spam (unsolicited postings) were becoming a problem. This image verification means a human has to make the comment, not a spam-bot.
Over and out. SF
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Yesterday we were treated to a long sail in San Francisco Bay by Jim Stroud aboard his Wind Warrior, a Petersen 34. It was a cloudless and sunny day with the wind forecast of 15 knots.
Brenda and I arrived at the boat at 11 AM and after a tour of the boat and a chat we motored out. Wind Warrior is another IOR boat with lines similar to Pachuca. She is sloop rigged, has a flatter deck and higher stanchions than Pachuca, which Brenda and I consider very good features. She also carries a whopping 10 Lewmar winches: 4 on the cabin and 6 around the cockpit.
We took advantage of the passage from the marina to the Richmond Shipping Channel to take photographs of the Red Oak, a WWII Victory ship that slated for restoration sometime in the future.
We set sail soon after clearing the shipping channel and headed for Raccoon Strait, between Angel Island on our left and the Tiburon peninsula on our right. It was a very picturesque passage that we had not fully appreciated on our arrival from Neah Bay. We saw yachts on moorings in a small snug cove on the Eastern side of Angel Island, which is a public reserve. The wind became light and variable until we emerged on the SW side of the strait. We got good views of Richardson Bay and Sausalito on our right, with plenty of boats on the hook at Richardson Bay.
We then came close to the Golden Gate bridge then turned toward the SF shoreline. Jim pointed out the Presidio, the big TV tower, the various harbors, and other landmarks. We tried to pass north of Alcatraz Island but the wind had other ideas so we passed south of the island reasonable close to the shore, which gave us good views of the buildings on the island. On the way we passed a red buoy draped with sea lions having an easy day. Jim mentioned that he is related to the "Birdman of Alcatraz", also named Stroud.
The sail back to Richmond was a very, very good brisk beat against a 15 kt wind.
We tied up at about 4 PM after what had been a thoroughly enjoyable day.
The accompanying photographs are self explanatory. The top photo shows the Marina Bay boat harbor in the background as we motored out. I am sure that at least two photos were taken of Brenda and myself in the cockpit but we could not find them on in the camera.
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- Visit from Arnold, Mike, & Tina
- Comments To This Blog
- Visit to Haight Ashbury
- Visit to SFMOMA
- Track Bolt and Surprise Visit
- Off to Australia
- Comments on the Blog...
- Sail in SF Bay
- SF Cable Cars
- Visit to SF Maritime National Historical Park
- Flags, Baja Filter, etc
- Fuel and Puncture
- Mechanical Museum
- Visit to Liberty Ship
- Visit to San Francisco
- Bicycle Trial
- Settling Down in Richmond
- New Home for Pachuca
- Brenda's Travel Arrangement
- New Home for Pachuca
- Insurance Success
- SF Sail Photos
- Approaching the Golden Gate Bridge
- Photos from SF
- Arrived in San Francisco
- 22 hours from Golden Gate Bridge
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